Midday of 17 Erastus, 4708
After his visit at the Acadamae, Nox decides to get around to answering Queen Ileosa’s summons. Upon arriving, he leaves his weapons with the now unhelmeted Sabina, who grudgingly lets him in to the Queen’s chambers.
There is no sign on the Queen’s person or her possessions of the assassination attempt in the morning. Perfectly coiffed, Ileosa’s stunning radiance is sheathed this time in a formal yet form-fitting red dress with gold and white lace trim.
After commiserating over their shared experience with the Crown of Fangs, Ileosa lays out her concerns about the city.
If Vimanda’s secret is exposed now, it will create greater instability as the other Great Houses will have to figure out who will take the Arkonas’ place. But if Vimanda is exposed after the election of a new monarch, it will cast that election into doubt. With enemies just waiting to pounce and an infernal duke on the loose, the city needs a swift resolution to the power vacuum.
She knows Nox wants to be king and she can make him king, right now. No politicking or vote-counting needed. He just has to accept her hand in marriage and they can rule the city together.
Nox is skeptical, noting that Ileosa’s reputation is not exactly golden at the moment. She insists that once the true story gets out, about the shining hero rescuing the beautiful queen from a terrible curse, the commons will eat that fairy tale crap right up.
Nox asks about Sabina and Ileosa says that her lover understands this is a political marriage. It’s not as if the two of them haven’t been through this song and dance before. But even though this may be a union of convenience, that doesn’t mean it can’t be a pleasant one she says with a smile.
Ileosa also points out that they have complimentary skill-sets. Nox is very clearly the expert in security and public safety, while she understands politics and the soft power of words and appearances.
Nox tells her he will consider her offer. She tells him that he knows where to find her.
Out in the corridor, Nox asks to speak with Sabina. She takes him to the scry-proofed bathroom for a frank discussion. Sabina knows what Ileosa offered him and seemsa resigned to it.
Nox does understand why Ileosa seems to think that she can still hang onto the throne. Sabina says that Ileosa is afraid. She can’t go back to Cheliax and she has nowhere else to go in Varisia. She knows people hate her, but she thinks she’s safer in a castle full of guards than out on the streets.
Nox asks for Sabina’s thoughts on the potential union.
Sabina says that Ileosa would make a political marriage much more enjoyable for Nox than she did for King Eoded II—but he will never have her heart, the handmaiden adds with a note of pride.
She goes on to say that Ileosa was born to rule—just not Korvosa. With this, Nox agrees. He has no intention of marrying her, but he does not want to dash her hopes of remaining Queen just yet.
Sabina thanks him for this, and he promises to do everything he can to ensure that Ileosa comes to no harm. He thinks that she deserves a shot at redemption and that Sabina deserves a chance for happiness.
With that, Nox heads back to the Farima townhouse to prepare for his dinner date with Cressida Kroft.